Last Thursday, members of the Paliyan society of India’s Tamil Nadu state were proud to vote in the national parliamentary elections, according to a news story in the Times of India. The journalist reporting this story, V. Devanathan, had written three weeks ago about the discrimination the Paliyans suffer from the Tamils who live in […]

The Birhor are so jaded about the value of their votes—they have been so ignored by the power structures of their district—that they saw no reason to vote in the recent Indian elections. According to The Telegraph, one of India’s major papers, at least 80 families living in several villages in the Gomia block, the […]

While national elections in India made headlines worldwide in recent weeks, a Kadar hamlet decided to boycott the polls in Kerala to make their own statement. An article in The Hindu explained their reasoning. The various candidates for office in the state have not clarified their positions on the controversial 163 megawatt hydropower project on […]

A news report last week from the Anamalai Mountains of Tamil Nadu state in southern India indicates that the people in a Kadar village there are unconcerned about the Indian elections. One person interviewed asked what the elections were for, and when told they were to elect members to parliament, she wondered what they would […]

The Lepcha anti-dam group Affected Citizens of Teesta (ACT) tried last week to focus voters in Sikkim on the proposed hydropower dams that would destroy the sanctity of the Dzongu reserve. Indian national and state elections will be held in the state of Sikkim today, April 30. Campaigning in the state has aroused politicians to […]

Most of the Birhor families in the Bokaro District of Jharkhand State have been unaware of their right to vote in the Indian state and national elections, held last Thursday and today. The Birhor villages mentioned in a recent newspaper article, Tulbul and Khakhra Basti, are remote—miles from the nearest city. The 350 villagers have […]

Though his corruption was legendary, Thaksin Shinawatra, the former Prime Minister of Thailand, was quite popular with the Rural Thai people, the majority of the electorate in that nation. When the Thai military removed him from power on September 19, 2006, the rationale for the coup by his opponents was that the elections which he […]

During its recent national elections, the government of the Republic of Congo marginalized and exploited the nation’s minority indigenous societies, including the Mbuti, according to some observers. Human rights activists charge that the government did not prepare the indigenous people for the voting. A man from one of the indigenous groups (also referred to as […]